Save The Date: Arroyo Culture is just a Gold Line ride away

Map by The Living Museum

The Southwest Museum Gold Line Station is only a short walk from some of cultural and historic treasures of Highland Park, Mt. Washington and Montecito Heights. On Saturday, March 8, “The Living Museum: Sycamore Grove” will showcase the architecture, culture, history and environment on both sides of the Arroyo Seco with a “walking tour extravaganza,” music and presentations.

The idea is to build greater awareness of a cultural district referred to by organizers as a “museum without walls.” A statement issued by the sponsors of the event, which includes the Highland Park Heritage Trust, Friends of the Southwest Museum Coalition and Council District 1, summarizes the goal of of the Living Museum’s first event:

The idea behind the Living Museum is to acknowledge and promote the amazing array of LA history, architecture, ecology plus five museums all within a 15 minute walking radius of the SW Museum Goldline station. Nobody really knows about this district outside of the neighborhood! It is truly a secret hidden in plain sight. The SW Museum and Casa de Ad, the Lummis Home, Heritage Square and the Audubon all deserve more attention than they are getting and we are working to help bring more visitors and awareness to the district.

The Living Museum organizers plan to work with students and others to create other walking tours that explore the area’s rich history.


  1. do we bring our own armor or will protection be provided?

    • Yeah, walking tours of the Highland Park historic district are really scary–bring an AK47.

      • well, the surrounding area is certainly not a low-crime area. Nonetheless, the tours sound interesting and I’ll probably check one out…

        • This is an exciting initiative that shows how the institutions of the Arroyo, the preservation community, the Friends of the Southwest Museum, and the Autry Museum (who’s entrusted with the Southwest Museum) could work together with City officials to build a walking/biking tourism activities that could bring new investments to this original set of suburbs of the Pueblo. The Southwest Museum and Casa definitely need to be invested in to make this vision a reality. For instance, the Casa might be a tour starting point for regular walking tours or self-guided hiking/biking tours. Our City officials, including Mayor Garcetti have the ability to help identify private and public dollars for these project. Do they have the will?

          As for the crack of True Freedom, I am mindful of a line from the musical Xanadu where the male lead says: “Don’t worry Kira. With you, I’m not afraid to go into downtown LA without a weapon!” That line refers to a downtown that no longer exists. Today, most people visiting downtown LA, where certain public investments have sparked new private investment, would wonder what that line means.

          Let’s do the same for the Arroyo Seco communities where the tourists from around the world can learn how this area was the cradle of much cultural and artistic innovation at the turn of the last century.

    • Its not your grandfather’s Highland Park.

  2. Very much looking forward to this event!

  3. I really love this idea and will be in attendance. Even if it does seem like a skit out of portlandia (yorklandia). York blvd gets all the attention but lower fig and the arroyo is where a lot of the history of highland park lies.

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